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Tandem Talk February 2014

2013 AGM and Christmas Ride
The WATCAC AGM and Christmas ride was well attended. Five tandems and two single bikes completed the Rec Ride from Winthrop around the Canning River to Kent Street Weir for a quick coffee before returning to Winthrop for the AGM.

Seventeen members attended the meeting.

The WATCAC committee for 2014 consists of
Greg Madson – President
Adriana Lepore – Vice President
Paul Metcalf – Treasurer
Trevor Maslen – Secretary
Jennifer Musgrave – Committee Member
Jo Burgess – Committee Member

Adriana Lepore’s dedication and hard work in volunteering for over 10 years as a committee member was recognised with a life membership.

The minutes from the AGM and all reports are available in full and in alternative formats (audio, large print, Braille and electronic formats) on request.

Recent Rides
There have been two Rides since the start of the year: One Club Ride and one Rec Ride.

The club riders started early to avoid the heat. 2 tandems and 5 singles started the Vic Park-Jandakot ride. However Paul and Margaret were sent back early to save a table at Sassy Cookie due to mechanical problems.

The first Rec Ride for 2014 started from Vic Park with 3 Tandems and 5 singles doing a loop around the foreshore to Mt Henry Bridge and back. It was great to welcome new pilot Steve and stoker John. Special mention must be given to John who did more kilometres on his first tandem ride than he had ever done on a bike before.

Our next Club Ride is scheduled for Sunday 16th February and the Rec Ride is scheduled for Sunday 9th March. Let’s see if we can get more tandems than single bikes out there!

New Tandems
Several new tandems will soon take pride of place in the WATCAC trailer.

At the end of last year Dr Brian Moon very generously donated a near new Cannondale flat bar tandem that he and his wife failed to make good use of. In addition, WATCAC was able to purchase Vicki Dilley’s racing Vetta at a very good price. Finally, our Lottery West grant towards two brand new mountain bikes has come through.

Your committee is very busy working out the best possible specifications for the new bikes as well as sourcing people to collaborate us in a mountain bike tandem clinic and planning a South West tour where we can take full advantage of these new machines. Stay tuned…..

Member News
Over the summer break some of our members were out adventuring while the rest of us relaxed and overate.

Trevor did a cycle tour of Vietnam of which he wrote:
“What an experience. Not only the cycling but the cultural experience, also.

Glad I did some training though, as we had Mountain Bikes and some very bad surfaces to contend with.

There was a group of 8: 2 Male 33 year old Canadians; 1 Female 33 year old Swiss; 1 Female 51 year old Kiwi; Father and son 46 & 17 from Adelaide: 1 Male 30 year old from Sydney and me, but I managed to give them all the heave ho, especially up short hills!

We climbed two Mountain Passes.

  • Hai Van Pass is 10 km long, climbing 1,000 meters at 10% took me 55 minutes no respite but I got up it
  • Dèo Ngoạn Mục is 30 km long, climbing 1,600 metres at 8% took me just over 3 hours, no respite but I got up that too

Not bad for an ol’ bugger like me eh? Cycled over 600 km between Hanoi and Saigon.

Despite riding on shocking road/path conditions between millions of motorbike riders none of us got injured. None of us had any stomach troubles either. Our Tour Leader gave us good advice on what and where to eat and drink and risks. It is amazing that we even walked across roads without getting hit; but although they don’t not drive as fast, it takes a great deal of nerve crossing the roads by foot let alone riding a bike between them.

Ate Vietnamese food the whole time so I looked forward to my barbecued steak tonight!”

And Paul, Margaret and Jo travelled to south for the Albany Half Triathlon. Jo writes of their adventures:
“For the second year, members Paul Fennell, Margaret Gibson and Jo Burges took part in the Country WA Builders Albany Half Triathlon on 4 January 2014.

Their team, aptly named Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad (given Margaret competes in the swim and cycle leg; not the run … yet) had a successful weekend albeit a couple of small hiccups encountered that were serious at the time, however can now be laughed at.

A smaller event (approximately 450 competitors and teams) than the similar distance Busselton and Mandurah Half Iron Men, Albany is a picturesque and challenging course.

Margaret began the day, putting in a solid swim ably assisted by Jo in the kayak giving instructions where required e.g. turn right now or you’ll end up in Antarctica. For those who have competed in Half Iron Men previously, this swim leg is two laps of an inverted triangle and includes an exit from the water on the first lap, a run around a marker approximately 10 metres from the water’s edge and then a re- entry. The team’s runner Donna assisted Margaret through this process.

It was then onto the cycle leg … Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad have become legendary for their extensive transition period, entertaining the audience with flamboyant throwing off of swimming gear and the transition into cycle wear including drying of feet and cuddles for other team members before setting off.
Unfortunately on this occasion, about three turns of the peddles into the ride, the chain got irretrievably caught and stopped Paul and Margaret dead in their tracks. The tandem was immediately upside down with several onlookers concluding “DOOM”. This was not to be the case, with the call being made ‘let’s get this chain ripped out’ and a technician quickly assisting to cut the damaged links out and putting a joiner in to keep them going. Even with the hold-up and the fact that the course has a climb up Mt Adelaide in the first kilometre, Paul and Margaret managed to achieve a personal best time for their 90km cycle by a minute from last year.

The teams runner Donna finished the day with the 21km run that included close on 4 km on the beach.

We have already registered for next year’s event and encourage others to consider it. The organisers are fabulous and very accommodating of the varying requirements of those on tandems. Both 2013 and 2014 had stellar elite athletes competing including Matty White and Katie Bevilaqua. The venue is wonderful and a spectator’s delight with Middleton Beach offering a fabulous vista for the swim and run legs in particular, and Albany in early January … a wonderful reprieve from the Perth heat … roll on January 2015.”

Giro D’Perth
For the second year running the Giro d’Perth (The backlane bike odyssey) will be part of Bike Week. A few of us rode last year and it was lots of fun. This year they should have ironed out the crinkles and it will be even better.

Held on Sunday 16th March this event involves a bike, a map, and clues. Distances vary from 11-31km, not including wrong turns and getting lost. The start time is 8:00am from a secret location somewhere in the City of Vincent. Registration is $28 each for a team of up to 4 people.

Toby, the organiser, has generously said he will give back $13 to WATCAC for every WATCAC tandem registered. Further information can be found on http://www.girodperth.com.au. Let me know if you want to join this event: Jennifer@winthropdc.com.

Freeway Bike Hike
The Freeway Bike Hike for Asthma is scheduled for Sunday 23rd March, with starts as follows:

  • 6:30am Langley Park 80km $97.50
  • 7:30am Kwinana 30km $55.00
  • 9:00am Currambine 30km, $55.00
  • 9:00am Bullcreek Shops 10km $45
  • 10:15am Stirling 10km $45

All rides finish at Langley Park. If you would like to participate please organise to collect your tandem from Adriana’s prior to the event.

Membership for 2014
If you are a former member and have not renewed your membership yet, contact a committee member and sign up for 2014. In addition to being able to join our rides and activities like the Tour de Rottnest, members are able to take our tandems on 6 month loans and benefit from the support and coaching that we provide. It’s still great value at only $30.

Tandem Loan Fees
On the subject of membership benefits, if you have a WATCAC tandem on loan but have not paid your loan fee, please contact a committee member to arrange payment.

And that’s just about everything, I think.

Happy and Safe Pedalling